During autumn and winter seasons, researchers of Institute for Environmental Solutions and SIA “Field and Forest” have started to evaluate plants (valerian (Valeriana officinalis L.), chamomile (Matricaria recutita), echinacea (Echinacea angustifolia), common dandelion (Taraxacum officinale), and siler (Saposhnikovia divaricata)) overwintering and analysing effectiveness of the harvested plants from the previous season.
Currently all the medicinal plants of the experimental fields in Priekuļi county are covered by snow and active field work has stopped. Before that, all plants were counted. In the spring 2019, fields and plants will be evaluated on how the winter conditions have affected each species and varieties.
Meanwhile researchers have started to analyse the collected data of harvested valerian, chamomile and common dandelion, from last season (year 2018). First conclusions have been made – even harvest of dandelion and valerian roots can continue for few months, more precise harvesting time must be clarified for manufacturing needs. That is due to quality of harvested plants and roots – quality indicators change quite significantly. For example, difference between samples that have been harvested in September and those in October.
Chemical analysis and the research is a part of the project “Growing genetic diversity of medicinal and aromatic plants” (Nr.126.96.36.199/16/A/307). It is supported by European Regional Development Fund, as a part of Measure 188.8.131.52 “Industry-Driven Research” of specific objective 1.1.1 “To increase the research and innovation capacity of scientific institutions of Latvia and their ability to attract external funding by investing in human resources and infrastructure”.
Find more about the project here.